Home>Highlight>Platkin to argue before Supreme Court in bid to allow people with a weed expungement to be eligible for PTI

Acting New Jersey Attorney General Matt Platkin. (Photo: Tim Larsen/Office of the Attorney General).

Platkin to argue before Supreme Court in bid to allow people with a weed expungement to be eligible for PTI

First N.J. attorney general to appear before top court since 2009

By David Wildstein, January 02 2023 5:35 pm

Matt Platkin will become the first state attorney general in more than a dozen years to argue a case before the New Jersey Supreme Court when he appears on Tuesday.

Platkin will present the state’s argument in two consolidated cases that will determine if a defendant with a “prior conditional discharge for a disorderly persons offense of marijuana possession eligible for the Pretrial Intervention program (PTI) if the prior offense was expunged.”

The state is arguing that the Cannabis Regulatory, Enforcement, Assistance and Marketplace Modernization Act supersedes a ban on people who complete a diversionary program not being eligible to qualify for PTI.    The state maintains that the legislature intended to wipe away all prior consequences of a previous marijuana offense, including qualification for PTI.

Platkin is seeking to overturn a 2021 appellate court decision written by Appellate Court Judge Hany Mawla finding the legislature was presumed to be familiar with the PTI prohibition and did not specifically word the bill to change the policy.

“We cannot inject language into a carefully worded statute,” wrote Mawla, the 2022 New Jersey Globe Tuchas Coverer of the Year.

In 2009, Attorney General Anne Milgram,  now the administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration, appeared before the state’s top court to argue that a new funding formula advocated by Gov. Jon Corzine should an decades of judicial oversight of school funding issues.

In the old days, attorneys general regularly appeared in court.  Attorney General David Wilentz personally prosecuted Bruno Richard Hauptmann for the kidnapping and murder of aviator Charles Lindbergh’s 200-month-old son.

Gov. Phil Murphy nominated Platkin as the 56th Attorney General of New Jersey last year.

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